View Poll Results: Is it okay to post/publish unflattering photos of strangers without their permission?

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  • Yes

    19 27.54%
  • No

    50 72.46%
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Thread: Is it okay to post/publish unflattering photos of strangers without their permission?

  1. #21
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    Just wondering, sometime ago someone mentioned about model release or something. Can anyone elaborate?

  2. #22
    vince123123
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    In that case, there is no way to vote "yes" or "no" because we would need an example to see whether in our opinion, it should be posted or not. if your poll was worded something like "is it ok to post an unflattering photo of strangers, e.g. the one by azure (insert link)" then it will be more definitive.

    Quote Originally Posted by snappist
    I do not have to set up another poll to ask for feedback whether I asked for the legal definition, moral definition, common sense definition or multi-evaluative definition, right?

    Doing so will be splitting ends and going off topic. If you want to answer this poll using the legal perspective alone, you have all the right to vote okay with a "Yes".

    Anyway, let the results of the poll speak for itself.

  3. #23
    vince123123
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    model releases are used, mainly in the United States where apparently the model has a legal right to sue the photographer should he not obtain a release from the model and uses or publishes the photographs in a commercial manner.

    It is however doubtful whether there is any corresponding requirement in Singapore.

    Quote Originally Posted by Obzervr
    Just wondering, sometime ago someone mentioned about model release or something. Can anyone elaborate?

  4. #24

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    [QUOTE=lavenderlilz][QUOTE=snappist]Simple question.
    Yes, I am not just garnering support for a stand I made.

    Not intending to slam u here - so you are actually not giving it a rest as opposed to your earlier answer to my question.

    Anyway I posted "yes" because I don't think its wrong to do so - but if the stranger had seen the shot & didn't like it, then I am prepared to take it down simply because he or she requested.

    As for that "offending" photo in question, like what others have said, "unflattering" is a subjective word. To you the picture is unflattering while I don't think so.
    The shot is not offending to me. I am sure it will be offending to the three people having their meals as pictured. I am sure people who know these three people will be offended. They are not captured in the best "light" and moment. It is almost ugly to some, repulsive to others and a disaster to few to be caught on film or pixel in this manner. It is an unflattery image of members of the public caught unaware. it is very unfair for them to be unknowingly pictured in this matter and, worse, posted for all to see. Do not misrepresent my points or pose misconceptions on the issue at hand!

    The crux of the issue here is that two members of the public are captured in an image that shows them with unflattery facial gestures while they are having their meal. To most people in the know, shooting people who are eating is an unacceptable subject matter. "Dictates of etiquette also provide guidelines of what to shoot and what not. Everyone has had unattractive moments when eating, walking, or even thinking."
    http://commfaculty.fullerton.edu/les...difference.doc
    (in this instance, it is of a lady with distorted lips as she appears to be chewing and another lady with her tongue sticking out as she reaches her tongue for a piece of chwee kueh -- http://forums.clubsnap.org/showpost....38&postcount=8)

    Unacceptable as it is to some to be shot unaware by known or unknown photographers while eating . It is even more unacceptable to see such a photo being posted.

    Ask any friends or colleagues who are not photographers whether they will be happy to see themselves in a photo captured unknowingly by some shutterbug and posted in a forum for the whole world to see how interestingly fitting they match the theme "Things that make us Singaporean" with their distorted lips and stuck out tongue enjoying their chwee kueh and kopi-o. It is candid moments at the expense of strangers in public!

    I am not slaming anyone now for posting any photo or their right to shoot. I am bringing attention to better discernment over our right to post photos in a public forum.

    This is the link.
    http://forums.clubsnap.org/showpost....38&postcount=8
    Sorry, as I am not a Cubsnap member, I cannot post photo, only can link. If I can post, I would shade off Azure's signature and post an unsigned photo as I am not directing at Azure. I hope this post throws light at an issue and brings maturity and understanding over what I feel is important.
    Last edited by snappist; 22nd October 2003 at 06:37 PM.

  5. #25
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    snappist

    you're poll is on an issue which is too subjective.

    if the question is "Is it ok to post photos of strangers without their permision"
    i'd answer: YES, BUT only if it isn't accompanied by criticism of the subject. it's fine to critique the photography, composition etc, but be kind to the person in the picture.

    however, i'm not sure how to vote on the issue of whether it's ok to post the pix if it's unflattering.

    i voted NO. because your poll suggests that the strangers are in a compromising position, obscene or otherwise one which he doesn't want to be seen in.

    just my thoughts.

  6. #26
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    Personal thoughts. Perhaps, due to the intimacy that clubsnappers share, many would share the rare moments captured through the viewfinder or in this case LCD screen (o.k I know the photog, personally). Maybe this ring of intimacy may be among the few hundred seasoned forumers. At times, oblivious to the fact that total membership registered have well exceeded 5000.

    Members: 5,342, Threads: 43,342, Posts: 348,393
    Welcome to our newest member, leekmt

    A few of my personal friends are among those registered, but not active participants, but do continue to browse the postings on a regular basis. And my guess would be, for a thread as prominent & with high viewership as ' Things that make us Singaporean' wouldn't escape these 'occasional forumers/browsers'.

    Incidentally, Snappist may have been one of them, but this time an 'occasional forumer/browser' was provoked to participate due to the urgency to seek ethical unerstanding among the 'intimate ring of active forumers.'

    Personally, I applaud such determination to uphold 'justice' (can't find a better term), though I may not agree with the personal attack against the phtog initially. Snappist would have done well if he had Private Message the party concerned to air his thoughts. Knowing the photog personally, I can say that he is one reasonable, non impulsive person and would readily listen. Unfortunately, it had to explode into a public discourse.

    Personally, I do find the photog of the three persons eating distasteful for public viewing. But in the fun side of photography, intimate friends do share some rare moments, perhaps in a lesser prominent thread, this photo wouldn't even be noticed by 'Occasional Forumers/Browsers' (most of the time of new/associate membership status).

    Perhaps the Clubsnap Admin would want to consider a special area where members posts are not accessible to new/associate members for these intimate moments.

    Anyway, just my personal thoughts. No offence intended.

    regards
    Last edited by Obzervr; 22nd October 2003 at 09:10 PM.

  7. #27

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    The answer is a DEFNITE YES!

    On what basis do I say this? Simple explanation. Come the next general elections, you will see many unflattering photos of MP wannabes.

  8. #28

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    I dun think it is appropriate to link the elections to our discussion. When MP wannabes go rallying, they expect media coverage. Being photographed is part and parcel of it whether flattering or unflattering. However, we are talking of people innocently minding their own business only to be photographed and shown publicly on the web without their prior consent

    From a photographer's point of view, being artistic and all, maybe the photos are not all that unflattering. However, the people you photographed may jus be layman singaporeans who know nothing about art and photography. Those pictures to them may be deemed unflattering. i always thought it would be a polite gesture to think how the subject would feel upon seeing the photo esp if he/she knows it would be publicly displayed on the web.

  9. #29
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    IMHO, unless it's your job to record images of strangers, flattering or unflattering, for publication, news, evidence, then i guess you'll have to publish them to survive.

    but as one who takes photos for enjoyment, fun, personal fullfilment, etc. i like to think of us as people 1st and phtographers 2nd. And i don't think there is any person who wants to be seen as unflattering in public, whether intentional or unintentional.

    there is no law that stops one from posting/publishing such photos, but there's a feeling called empathy and there's a thing called concience, both of which are inside all of us.

    just my 2 cents.
    Today is a gift; that's why it's called the present.
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  10. #30

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    I believe that most ppl want their pics to be beautifully taken and shows the best of them.

    If that's the case, i'm sure most of them won't mind their pic being posted..

    BUT, if it's a unflattering shot, i'm sure most won't want it to be posted..

    So, it boils down to ONE factor.. flattering or unflattering pic! and how to distinguish between the two? My method is to put myself in the shoe of the person being taken.. simple as that.

    Take this as an EXAMPLE..
    You took a pic of an ugly singaporean, digging his nose and drooling at a babe passing by.. a KEEPER!!
    A TYPICAL UGLY SINGAPOREAN!
    you decided to post and show the WORLD.. but WAIT!
    imagine that YOU are the one digging YOUR nose and drooling at the same time!! YOU YOU YOU!! showing YOUR UGLY SIDE TO THE WORLD.. can you take it?? what would your friend think of you??
    ".. wahh.. that Mr A always look so decent, didn't know that he can be so disgusting.. "
    or
    ".. Mr A, CEO of XXX company, showing his ugly side.."

    I just hope that everyone, before you post any pic, think 1st.

    my 2 cents

  11. #31

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    Unless the person expressively objects to it being posted, I don't see any wrong in posting an image taken in a public place whether it is flattering or not.

  12. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zerstorer
    Unless the person expressively objects to it being posted, I don't see any wrong in posting an image taken in a public place whether it is flattering or not.
    Very individualistic IMO. IMHO, not just the person involved can protest. The community associated can and should be allowed to protest and be heard. This associated community can be the subject's family, relatives, clan, ethnic group, religious group, neighbours, collegues, acquaintance, a fellow Singaporean so on and so forth.

    Of course the methodology of the protest is another issue. The protest can be personal, (ie personal confrontation be it peaceful or otherwise) with the party involved, or public in violent /non-violent manner.

    However, a protest, regardless where it comes from, as long as it is a valid one should be given due consideration when raised. Of course the protester can seek legal recourse if he so wishes, but as a community, is it really necessary to resort to suing one another? (I hope the lawyers out there won't protest to this as it may affect their rice bowl :P)

  13. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zerstorer
    Unless the person expressively objects to it being posted, I don't see any wrong in posting an image taken in a public place whether it is flattering or not.
    You know Jesus resorted to using simple parables to explain simple things to complicated people. We can all learn from Jesus.

    Let me paint a scenario to get the idea across.

    Let's say Zerstaner is a complete layman and do not know photography or what clubsnap is.

    One day, Zerstaner went dating with his new girlfriend at Botanic Gardens one fine sunny day. He excused himself to clean his nose at an obscure area in Botanic Gardens. Sensing an itch inside his nostrils, he took out a tissue and cleaned the insides.

    Unknown to him, a photographer called Tom was photographing birds nearby with a long telephoto. Tom happened to zoom in the angle of Zerstaner and find the image of Zerstaner looking stoned and "digging" his nose very candid and somewhat amusing. Tom snapped a clear shot showing the full face of Zerstaner digging his nose with a nice bokeh of an elephant statue with a long nose behind. Tom returned to his bird photography after just one shot of this total stranger.

    Tom went back home and checked out the photos of the day. And he was ecstatic about the nice composition and comic effect of a stranger digging his nose with a background of an elephant with a raised trunk. This candid shot definitely made it to be the joke of the day as a man was fiddling with his nose with an elephant statue raising its nose behind.

    Logging into clubsnap that evening, Tom saw a thread with the title "Post your funny shots here!". Sensing a great deal of relevance of the newly pixelated candid shot, he immediately post the photo of Zerstaner, a complete stranger, in that unflattering moment digging his nose with a nice complementing background to match. Tom entitled the shot "Nosejob". The shot immediately received many hits as word spread among "intimate friends who do share some rare moments" that a really nice candid and funny shot of a man digging his nose in broad daylight with an elephant nose behind was posted by Tom, a regular and prominent forumer. Some jokes went as far as saying that this guy in the photo may develop the nose of an elephant as he continues his nose-digging. The man in that candid photo was the laughing stock of the week in that forum, even SEED the week saw some forumers printing that shot to be used as a table topic for dinner. Soon as many as 1,500 to 2,000 pair of eyeballs in clubsnap saw that photo. Some "photo collectors" snitched that photo and post it on other websites. Some "packaged" that photo into an email message to forward to friends and family as a joke. Now as many as 10,500 pairs of eyeballs went through the "unflattering" photo of Zerstaner digging his nose in front of an elephant with the interesting caption that says "evolution of a nose digger... man to elephant.. how it all started."

    Two weeks later, Zerstaner was at work and received a rude shock. His girlfriend called him that morning and told him that she is disgusted of his behavior in public. Zerstaner was shocked and asked what exactly did he do? His girlfriend told him that she received a joke email from her friends that his boyfriend was "caught" doing a disgusting act of nose digging. She expressed that she is disappointed and there is a loss of face being the girlfriend of a man who was a laughing stock. Some of her friends even called her Mrs. Elephant.

    Zerstaner was shocked, speechless and asked to get the email and photo as he cannot believe he was ever shot by his friends digging his nose anywhere. His friends would never do this to him. His girlfriend forwarded him the joke email with the photo and told him to check it out.

    Zerstaner became quite stoned when he saw himself in that photo and being made a total jerk with a fitting caption to match. "Who did this to me!!??!!!" screamed in his head as he jogged his memory to that day in Botanic Gardens. He vaguely remembered only one photographer shooting birds or insects nearby. But then could he have taken the shot as he doesn't seem to be aiming at him most of the time.

    Then Zerstaner confided this problem in his good friend, Peter, who happened to be a photographer. Peter promised to check it out after knowing what a terrible prank was played on his best friend.

    Peter went to clubsnap and searched through the threads. With a keyword "nose", the search was easy and soon ended. Tom was the culprit as the date of posting matched the day Zerstaner went to the Botanic Gardens. Peter PM Tom and asked for an explanation on why his friend was shot that way and posted without his permission. He further elaborated on the "damage" that was caused as Zerstaner is a major laughing stock with that email floating around. Zerstaner not only became the talk of the town, his reputation was impaired. Some people in the streets even whispered "here comes the elephant man" when they saw Zerstaner. Zerstaner has never been so embarrassed and ridiculed in his whole life.

    Tom PM Peter back and mentioned he thought that "fire-and-forget shot is pretty decent. He thought it is fun and full of spontaneity. He was just having fun. If Peter want to pursue this further, "PM me, baby."

    Peter was aghast! Peter went on to post openly and recounted the terrible ordeal his friend Zerstaner is going through due to such an unflattering shot of him in "unattractive moments". Peter thought that posting photos should be exercised with more discernment and responsibility. And Tom should use some of that. Peter also mentioned that shooting and posting photos of people in unflattering manner should be curtailed. That is a form of etiquette

    Some friends who know Tom replied, "I think your comments directed at Tom were totaling uncalled for.
    Tom's contribution to this forum goes perfectly with the theme "Post your funny shots here!". His pic conveyed the theme very clearly - and I don't think he was trying to show "ugliness".
    To the comment Tom made regarding etiquette, a forumer replied "Your "holier-than-thou" attitude ought to be moderated."

    Peter was taken aback by the strong defense by supporters of Tom at an issue he knew had a clear answer and many wounded victims - Zerstaner, Zerstaner's girlfriend, Zerstaner's self confidence and Zerstaner's reputation.

    Another forumer replied that "Unless the person expressively objects to it being posted, I don't see any wrong in posting an image taken in a public place whether it is flattering or not."

    To that, Peter got Zerstaner to expressively object to the photo being posted. With that, Tom apologized after some deliberation and deleted his original post of the photo from the forum.

    Three days later, Peter replied to Tom that it is too late. The damage is irreparable. Zerstaner had many quarrels derived over this matter with his girlfriend and they had broken up. What's more, Zerstaner's academic friends as far as from Italy had received such an email with further variations of the caption "Modern Day Nosetradamus". Zerstaner's embarrassment is deep and immeasurable.

    Zerstaner is now a global laughing stock!

    Years later Zerstaner went to UK for his degree course. Over the college email network, he received an email message entitled "Evolution of an Elephant Man"
    Last edited by snappist; 23rd October 2003 at 01:49 AM.

  14. #34

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    Lets see it this way:

    Photos never attempt to tell the truth, it is not possible to do so. What it captures is just a slice of time with a result that can be interpreted as flattering(better than reality) or unflattering(worse than reality).

    The resultant emotional response evoked in the viewer depends on his/her own innate bias and prejudices.

    Whether a shot is flattering, realistic or unflattering is wide open to debate such that it can hardly be a factor of consideration.

  15. #35

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    Quote Originally Posted by snappist
    You know Jesus resorted to using simple parables to explain simple things to complicated people. We can all learn from Jesus.
    Indeed you can.

    If I were indeed caught digging my nose in public I would admit it simple as that.

    Only hypocrites and lesser assured beings would attempt to deny or cover up their own actions.

    If your post was meant to inflame, then I pray you do get your spelling right or else it simply speaks of a certain cowardice and lack of security.

    Do I perceive a certain intolerance towards opposing views? An opinion Nazi do we have?

    Yeah, long post and your point being?

  16. #36
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    Paranoia?

    I've been to 2 SEEDs since my registration (due to some physical limitations) and I never seen 'funny' photos being the centre of enjoyment. Personally, I'd rather try out the latest available gadget than to engage in 4 hours of 'manic' laughter over one 'funny' photograph (unfortunately, I'm a manual camera user so new gadgets don't really draw my attention, so I ended up drinking my coffee and discuss with a group of concerned CSers on my injury)

    On my first SEED, a CSer offered to drive me all the way back to my place. Of course, I accept the offer. On my second SEED, besides other matters, I intended to purchase an extension cord for a flash, but there was a miscommunication. That weekend, to my pleasant surprise, the seller drove all the way to my place ... about 40Km away just to deliver the item. I've been pleasantly welcomed by them, though I'm not physically active with the planned outings etc.

    If they are real opportunists, I would have seen a pic of a person hanging a camera around the neck with a walking stick and jokes flying about,"How with his walking stick would this guy be able to click his manual camera. (or did I miss it already?)

    I don't believe CSers are irrational erratic people. Though a few may poke jokes in many directions, I doubt it'll get 'This massive attention' if not for the public protest.

    my personal experience & opinions though. I do advocate responsible posting if that is your message. But I guess, the elephant joke is too distasteful to even be considered.

    Having said all that, now that I have experienced being wheel chair bound, I feel that when I went about doing things like, buying my own newspaper, going into a pharmacy and get my own supplements, entering a public toilet, when wheelchair bound (at most times with a camera over my neck) drew quick stares.

    Previously, I might have seen my situation as a photographic opportunity, but now, I guess 'handicaps' as understood by able bodied people are not really handicapped. When I was on the wheelchair, I was contented with what I can do while wheelchair bound. I was lucky for not to be any of the subjects of the recent photo marathon, but I guess, maybe, a wheelchair bound man is just taking his slow stride in his contented slow life.

    Publicly exposing this without seeking to understand his life, is this considered as unflattering?

  17. #37

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zerstorer
    Indeed you can.
    If I were indeed caught digging my nose in public I would admit it simple as that.
    Only hypocrites and lesser assured beings would attempt to deny or cover up their own actions.
    If your post was meant to inflame, then I pray you do get your spelling right or else it simply speaks of a certain cowardice and lack of security.
    Do I perceive a certain intolerance towards opposing views? An opinion Nazi do we have?
    Yeah, long post and your point being?
    I deliberately used Zerstaner instead of Zerstorer. Can't you see that?

    Yes you would admit it. And simply shrug it off as good humor.

    But too bad, the aunties who are caught in that photo with stuck out tongue and twisted lips might not realise until maybe someday in three months' time when their son got a joke email packaging that famous photo featuring their mother and auntie as the latest humor at their expense.

    That long scenario was meant to draw the consequences of such irresponsible posting of photos of people caught unaware in public that showed them in "off-colour" moments that may embarrass or upset them if posted. Obviously some people had a hard time understanding this and resorted to further name calling and personal attacks.

    If the aunties captured unaware with tongue sticking out and twisted lips while eating in that photo are your auntie, mother, sister or relatives, will you be so indifferent about the issues I raised?

    They are not anybody I knew. Though I find the man with them familiar. These aunties can be identified clearly. They are photographed in unattractive moments in public minding their own private business, eating. This photo is posted for all to see without their permission. Even if they are to find out much later and demand all photos vanished. Deleting all saved photos are not possible. Damage is already done on these "innocent" ladies.

    By creating this poll and increasing awareness, I aim to make people exercise better discernment towards posting of photos, especially those of the unknowing public.

  18. #38

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    i polled "yes" cos i feel it's really too subjective whether a photo is deemed "flattering" or otherwise..

    for example, what about pictures that we take on our travels showing poverty, street beggars and so on?

    what about photographers who take pictures of things "as they are", like prostitutes and war - could you call that unflattering too?

    also, i don't think there should be such hard and fast rules about "not taking pictures of people eating"... Eating is part of our culture and pictures showing our culture is a great subject..

    the photog's responsibility goes as far as to make sure he does not go back and digitally modify the picture, distorting the subject into what it is not.. if the photog's intent is really not to offend but to "capture" a picture to make a statement or to tell a story, and is quite willing to take it down should it prove unknowingly offensive, then it should be alright, i feel..

    else we should just confine ourselves to taking pictures of stick insects making love or stone statues and let the great art of street photography die away..

  19. #39

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    Quote Originally Posted by Obzervr
    Publicly exposing this without seeking to understand his life, is this considered as unflattering?
    To this may I reiterate my previous reply.

    The resultant emotional response evoked in the viewer depends on his/her own innate bias and prejudices.


    We all have our own emotional baggage. If we perceive something to be offensive, ugly or distasteful, it is evoked from our own personal prejudice.

    If one doesn't attempt to judge others so quickly, there wouldn't be any problem at all. That is in essence, similar to what you have expounded.

    If a viewer sought to see the image as that being a normal view of everyday people having a meal, there need not be any negative connotation attached to it. Judging from outward appearances alone is IMO, superficial. We are not all movie stars of sublime grace.

  20. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by Obzervr
    Paranoia?

    I've been to 2 SEEDs since my registration (due to some physical limitations) and I never seen 'funny' photos being the centre of enjoyment. Personally, I'd rather try out the latest available gadget than to engage in 4 hours of 'manic' laughter over one 'funny' photograph (unfortunately, I'm a manual camera user so new gadgets don't really draw my attention, so I ended up drinking my coffee and discuss with a group of concerned CSers on my injury)
    That scenario is an exaggerated scenario to some extent. It is a depictment of a certain paranoia of how sick jokes are formed, often at the expense of others. Photos that depcit people in "less attractive" or unflattering manner are good fodder for sick jokes.
    WIthout the forming of sick email jokes, the damage to the aunties/ladies with that "unattractive" photo is already done by posting it.

    Please do not take my scenario seriously as a truth as I stated in the beginning that it is a scenario. Clubsnap SEED is quite alright and the people are not so boliao... the depictment is somewhat fictitious. But in real life, anything can happen.

    "my personal experience & opinions though. I do advocate responsible posting if that is your message. But I guess, the elephant joke is too distasteful to even be considered. "

    YEs I intend to advocate responsible posting.
    Last edited by snappist; 23rd October 2003 at 02:48 AM.

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